Following the road traffic accident on Kensington’s Exhibition Road in west London, where a Private Hire vehicle struck several pedestrians and two other cars, even the most unbelieving and paranoid are now coming round to accepting that this was not a terrorist act, merely an example of bad driving and maybe inexperience, aided and abetted it seems by the inability to do without the ever-present SatNav.
Squeaky terror scare finger up the bum time
So it might be expected that those who made the wrong call on Saturday afternoon, and opted for incitement and scaremongering, would see sense and back down from their positions trying to frighten the public into believing the capital was under attack. And to her credit, even pro-am motormouth Katie Hopkins deleted all her incendiary Tweets from the two hours following the crash. But one rant merchant remains unmoved.
To no surprise at all, purveyor of serial dishonesty Nigel “Thirsty” Farage, former UKIP Oberscheissenführer, has declined to make any retraction or apology for his uninformed and totally untrue comments made at the time. As the Evening Standard has told, “Just minutes after the crash, the Brexiteer gave an interview to Fox News”. He claimed “Certainly while we have heard nothing official, the Metropolitan Police are clearly not only treating this as a terrorist incident, but it looks to me like they expect there could be more". It was a total pack of lies. For which he has, characteristically, failed to apologise.
Farage had no idea how the Metropolitan Police were treating the incident, as he hadn’t bothered contacting them beforehand. He just made it up, seeing what he wanted to see, shooting from the hip in order to satisfy the agenda of Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) and getting himself some free publicity. Worse, by saying “there could be more”, he was needlessly inciting panic in a crowded city.
On top of that, Farage took to Twitter to tell his adoring followers “We have 3,000 suspected terrorists living in the UK & 23,000 people known to security services who could do us harm”, handily juxtaposed with the scene from Exhibition Road, which by then had a significant Police presence, with much of the area sealed off.
Even after he grudgingly added “Met say incident in South Ken is a traffic collision. But huge police response shows the state of high alert the country finds itself in”, it was to effectively say “it might not have been terrorism, but it was the Scary Muslims (tm) at fault because they brought all these cops out”. All this, and the additionally dishonest pretence from Fox News that Mr Thirsty was a “Brexit Leader”.
As the Standard has observed, it was not just Labour MPs who passed severely adverse comment upon Farage. Journalists queued up to condemn his attention seeking antics and pretentious irresponsibility. Yet broadcaster LBC continues to give him a platform to peddle his dishonesty, to the clear discomfort of his fellow programme hosts.
As to why our free and fearless press, and broadcast media, keep on giving this snake oil salesman a platform to air his prejudice - you might wish to ask that. I couldn’t possibly comment.